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June 05, 1984 - Image 7

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Text
Publication:
Michigan Daily, 1984-06-05

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Lack of volunteers
hurts counseling

The Michigan Daily - Tuesday, June 5, 1984 - Page 7

By THOMAS HRACH
Despite the myriad of counseling ser-
vices available at the University and in
the city, those that do not charge a fee
are plagued by too many patients and
not enough volunteers.
Part of the recent rise in counseling
can be attributed to the state's mental
institutions, said Weicher van Houten,
director of the University's outpatient
psychiatry clinic.
"PERHAPS today people are more
willing to discuss their problems," he
said, "but there is also a tendency to
move people out of state hospitals too
quickly. Many of the patients shouldn't
be out on the streets."
The patient load has also increased at
facilities designed for students with
mental and emotional problems.
During the busiest periods - the late
fall and early winter, psychologial
counseling service in the Union cannot
keep up with its caseload.
"During our busy times of the year,"
said clinical social worker Joan Zald of
Counseling Services, "we take all the
patients initally but on return visits
we're forced to put less serious cases on
waiting lists."
THE PROFESSIONAL Counseling
Services staff primarily handles
serious emergencies, while simpler
cases, such as depression, are usually
turned over to the volunteers at
GUIDE, a free consultation service
manned by students.
The 76-GUIDE phone number is
widely publicized as a counseling ser-
vice for students, but a lack of volun-
teers has forced the service to close for
the summer. Callers are greeted by a
recording referring them to other men-
Stop counselir

tal health services.
While free services are available to
students seeking immediate care, very
little free help is available beyond the
initial consultation.
"OUR SERVICE is only the front
line," said Zald. "It's our job to help the
students get to those that can help
them." Counseling Services refers
students with serious problems such as
drug abuse or suicidal tendencies to
professional services for which studen-
ts must foot the bill.
The University's Counseling Center
on Huron Street offers a free con-
sultation and then charges an hourly
fee for, testing and treatment by
graduate clinical psychology students.
Health Services also offers coun-
seling for a fee after the free first
session, and they only treat suicidal
students.
"WE CAN fix a person's medical
problems, but then we must decide if its
safe for them to go home. Many times
we're forced to send a patient to other
clinics," said social worker Jay
Callahan of Health Services.
Several professional off-campus ser-
vices are also available for a fee, but
many students who seek psychiatric
help often need little more than the
sympathetic ear offered by volunteers.
But volunteers are sometimes hard to
find, so the SOS Community Crisis Cen-
ter in Ypsilanti holds three volunteer
recruiting drives each year.
Volunteers at SOS must undergo 65
hours of training before working the
phones. "We look for caring, non-
judgemental attitudes in our volun-
teers," said SOS Director Maureen
Wilkes. "Basically we look for open-
minded people who want to help."
g cuts,

says review panel

(Continued from Page 3)
According to the study, less than 10
percent of counseling funding is chan-
neled into areas toward helping studen-
ts with severe problems.
ONE SUCH service is 76-GUIDE, a
crisis line, which was forced to cut its
24-hour service back to 5 p.m. to 10 a.m.
in 1981, and shuts down completely in
the summer.
Marsden said that the psychology
clinic in the Counseling Service is a
"last chance" - helping people with
severe emotional problems. He said
that his office occasionally has to shut
the doors on people who need help
because the staff is overbooked and
there is no time to schedule more
patients.
"It is clear that there are people with
severe problems that need help that
aren't getting it," he said.
* BUT NOT everyone agrees that the
money for severely disabled students is
inadequate.
Johnson said that if the allocations
were different than the report showed,
"I'd be scared."
He said that most students who come
to the University do not normally need
extensive help, so the small percentage
of funds given to areas in which more
highly trained counselors requiring
higher pay are needed is adequate.
THE SECOND recommendation of the
task force, to have an ongoing commit-
tee to review all counseling programs,
is a first step toward assessing the

quality of services students receive -
something not analyzed in the review.
"We need to watch between what is
needed and what is where," Marsden
said.
Dr. Charles Judge, Director of
Academic Services in LSA said that in
academic counseling, the demand out-
weighs the availability of services,
especially during class registration. He
also attributes the problem to the
budget cuts throughout the University,
not nly to counseling service fund
reductions.
"With less money all over, more
problems fall on us," he said.
One example is that classes close
faster with fewer faculty members
teaching, so students now go to
academic counseling with this problem.
"A fair amount of that could be
streamlined," perhaps using a com-
puter system to tell a student if, for
example, their distribution
requirements have been met, Marsden
said. Then, more money could be chan-
neled into counseling for students who
need it more, he said.
The review, which was started in 1982
and completed in February of this year,
has gone back for some "further
defining of the recommendations,"
Johnson said, and if the recommen-
dations are valid to Johnson andmFrye,
a new committee will be appointed to
implement them "as soon as possible,"
Johnson said.

On Guard Associated Press
President Reagan rubs elbows with the Coldstream Guards as he watches a
guard of honor yesterday at Kensington Palace Gardens shortly after his
arrival in London. Reagan plans to attend the seven-nation economic sum-
mit which begins Thursday.
Protestors chant at.
Reagan policy speech
(continued fromPage4)
Moscow to reduce or eliminate such about 5,000 protesters, shouted "Ron-
weapons on both sides. nie, Ronnie, out, out, out."
"We need to have the Soviets return But in the first reaction from
to the bargaining table," he said. Moscow, a commentator for the Soviet
"I BELIEVE we must not be news agency Novosti dismissed
satisfied, and we dare not rest, until the Reagan's remarks, saying the
day we have banished these terrible American president "has again showed
weapons of war from the face of the himself to be a master of speaking
earth forever." much, but saying little."
Reagan's address was interrupted ThuhUSofialacnwegdt
briefly by the walkout of three of the 166 Ths oghaU.S.offeiiciatowedgteyi
Irish lawmakers. Twenty other mem- was not a major new initiative, they
hers beycotted the speech and outside said it was a change.
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